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st valentin

While France has been long associated with romance, there’s
one place that’s more romantic than anywhere else – the little village of St
Valentin, located within the heart of the Loire Valley, which has been declared
the ‘village of love’ thanks to its namesake. Visiting the village on
Valentine’s Day is particularly special, as every February 14th the
village hosts the February Festival, which will also take place in St Valentin
this year.

St Valentin first became recognised as the ‘village of love’
in the 1960s, and in the 1980s the Lovers’ Garden was created as well as the
February Festival. The festival unfolds between February 12 and 14, with the
Lovers’ Garden becoming open for business; visitors can pin their love notes
and messages on the Tree of Vows, plant a tree, commemorate their love on the
Tree of Eternal Hearts and even get married in the garden gazebo.

It’s not just the garden that comes to life with romance
during the festival however, as the whole village becomes decked with flowers,
especially red roses, with a host of romantic activities on offer for you to
enjoy as a couple. Watch chocolate makers craft hundreds of chocolate hearts,
get your love letters stamped from the St Valentin post office, or buy each
other a postcard or special gift from the shops or market. There’s even a
special church service, where you can have your relationship blessed by a
priest, and in the evening you can enjoy a special dinner with ballroom

St Valentin is one of the prettiest villages you’ll find in
the Loire Valley, and if you’re planning on visiting the city of Bourges, the
village is handily located nearby. If you’re not able to make it for the
February Festival, there’s always next year, or in August the village also
celebrates Saint Amour in another romantic celebration if you’re planning your
France holidays in the summer.

Image: Kicki Zeilon, available under Creative Commons

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